Man Survives Botched Hanging; Iran Vows To Try Again

NPR icon by Scott Neuman
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Hamideh Shafieeha

Amnesty International is urging Iranian authorities not to go ahead with the execution of convicted drug smuggler after the man survived a botched hanging last week.

The 37-year-old man, identified as Alireza M, was found alive in a morgue after he was hanged at a jail in Iran's northeastern city of Bojnord.

A news release from Amnesty International says:

"According to official state media, a doctor declared him dead after the 12 minute-hanging, but when the prisoner's family went to collect his body the following day he was found to still be breathing.

"He is currently in hospital, but a judge reportedly said he would be executed again 'once medical staff confirm his health condition is good enough.' "

The BBC quotes an Iranian official as saying: "The verdict was the death sentence, and it will be carried out once the man gets well again."

Philip Luther, director of Amnesty International's Middle East and North Africa Program, said: "The horrific prospect of this man facing a second hanging, after having gone through the whole ordeal already once, merely underlines the cruelty and inhumanity of the death penalty."

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